Mila was gathering up her human resources documents and new employee training software into their respective files, in order to prepare them for sending to various translation companies. She reminded herself – for the 13th time in the last half hour – that she had only half a day to gather translation quotes from whatever half-decent services she could find online, and then compare differences in price and turn-over rate, and get back to her supervisor with details. Mila had only had this job for about four months, so impressing Mr. Sansa by getting this done with super human speed and geek-like efficiency – would be a very good thing.
This situation worried her a little, since the results were not entirely within her control. What if none of the translation services had rates that were under budget? What if they all needed a week or more to translate all of the files? Her mind filled with these kinds of doubts as she went to work typing in the keywords to bring up the top translation services online.
Professional Greek translation – Mila typed into her web browser, followed by similar search terms such as professional business translation, professional Italian translation, and myriad of others. She quickly jotted down the first five or six online translation companies that appeared the most in top results for her searches.
She went to the web page listed for professional Greek translation, which took her to an inside article on a translation site called Tomedes. The article described what, how and who translates English to Greek and Greek to English.
“Well, at least they seem to be a decent service. But anyone can write stuff on a page about how good they are. Let’s hope it’s not all smoke and mirrors,” she thought to herself.
There was a menu on the left column of every web page on the Tomedes Translation site, which allowed anyone to select translation languages, upload documents, input word counts or copy and paste documents for an instant quote.
“I have .ppt files. Will they even be recognized by such a basic looking menu? And I highly doubt my .swf files will be uploaded. How am I going to know if these people even see my quote request?” Mila worried to herself, but had no choice but to go ahead. She first tried her .ppt files.
No sooner had she selected the “Show translation price and time” button, than a little chat window popped up, asking if she needed any help.
“Hi, I’m Jane,” the icon girl in the chat window introduced herself. “What do you need help with?”
“Oh thank God,” Mila breathed a sigh of relief. “I am going crazy trying to figure out how to get these files uploaded, get a decent quote and get them into the translation process. I have several different types of software files, and I don’t have a lot of time,” Mila explained, furrowing her brow at the screen, and holding her breath a little, waiting for the response she hoped would not be the wrong one.
“No problem, ma’am,” Jane-the-virtual-chat-girl responded with a pleasant matter-of-fact tone (Or at least we suspect that’s how Jane talks, although there is no way to be totally sure, since Jane doesn’t actually have any audio element to her speech). “Tomedes has a large number of both specialized and standard translation project managers. Can you tell me the language pairs and subject matter of the translations you need, as well as what kind of turnover time you are seeking?”
“Well, there’s the PPT files – er, 8 pages of Powerpoint Presentation, that is, which need English to Greek and Italian translation. I also have SWF files – Adobe Flash, I mean, which needs the text components to be translated from English to Greek, too, which total about 10 pages. These are HR presentation and tutorials for new employees at our Italy and Greece IT company branches, called ‘TechieLand,’ ” Mila mentally check-marked each task, wondering if she had covered everything.
“Oh wait a minute,” Mila suddenly remembered, ” I also need Russian translations for the PPT files. Is that possible?”
“Of course!” Jane replied reassuringly. “We have many great translators for those languages and plenty of others, in case you decide you need further language translations. Now, Mila, here’s what we’ll do. Jason McFall is one of our fabulous project managers, and he will be contacting you promptly, and tell you what needs to be done. Just fill out a contact form with a brief explanation of your presentation translation and the kind of professional translation services you need. You can also specify what kind of time frame you’re working with, and other special requirements. He’ll respond to you right away. Any questions?”
“No I think I got it from here. Thanks Jane,” Mila smiled gratefully.
Mila filled out the contact form as directed. She wondered just how long it would be until this Jason guy got back to her. The day was getting shorter and shorter, and she wanted to have this taken care of before the work day was over at 5pm.
She no sooner had she sent the contact form and started to browse another translation service for a 2nd option, when her email alert sounded. It was an unmistakable alert, because she had set it to a few notes of computer generated harp music. She needed her email alerts to have a relaxing sound, because often they piled into her inbox at the rate of several dozen per hour. Several dozen email alerts per hour – when the alert is some kind of beep, buzz, tweet, twitter, ring, chang, chime, chirp or peep – causes a migraine very quickly.
She clicked on the email from Tomedes Translation Project Manager, Jason McFall. She read, just barely aloud,
Thank you for choosing Tomedes Translation Service as your professional translation experts. Please forward copies of all documents, files, and presentation materials that you need translated. Once I receive your files, I’ll send a quote for all materials, as well as an itemized quote for each language.
Tomedes Project Manager
Mila forwarded the materials as requested, relieved that the account manager had responded quickly. Despite what Mr. McFall had said in the email, she put an extra emphasis on the fact that she needed a quote. She was biting her nails at the thought of getting a quote that was way over budget. Mr. Sansa would not be happy about that.
When she heard the electronic glide of harp strings, she opened the response from Mr. McFall.
“Hi Mila. Please find below the various quotes for each language for all documents. We can have the translations completed and back to you by the end of the day on Friday.
Greek translation – $125
Italian translation – $130
Russian translation – $115
Please let me know if there are any questions about our translation services.
Tomedes Project Manager
Mila stared at the quotes. She started massaging her temples with her fingers. There had to be a mistake. He obviously sent the quotes for the wrong files, or got me mixed up with someone else.
Great, these people are already disorganized and they haven’t even translated anything yet, she thought inwardly. Mr. Sansa is going to eat me for lunch.
She wrote back,
I think you got something confused or mixed up. I needed translation quotes for 8 pages of Powerpoint Presentation, and about 10 pages of Adobe Flash file texts, for Greek, Italian and Russian. These figures are obviously not right.” ~ Mila W.
Jason quickly responded back.
No mistake. Those are the quotes for the requested documents and text sections. Let me know if there’s anything else you need help with.”
Tomedes Project Manager
Mila’s mouth dropped open when she read Jason’s email. She had expected some kind of graveling apology and maybe an offer for discounted services. But this was way better than some lame discount – she was way, way under the allowed budget for the translation.
Mr. Sansa just might give her Friday off! Okay, probably not. But, he certainly wouldn’t be disappointed.
Mila proceeded to type up an email with the information Mr. Sansa had requested, with a smile on her face, and whistling to the tune of her electronic harp email alert.
While this is an informative and creative exercise with a primary purpose of providing transparent business operations to our clients, as well as to provide illustration of the start-to-finish Tomedes translation process, and the following details are based upon actual translation services provided by Tomedes as well as some reactions we have received by our clients – all persons, companies and names specified below, apart from “Tomedes,” are purely fictional and do not represent any singular client or Tomedes account manager. Any similarities are purely coincidental.